Teaching Online Journalism

The liberal arts portion of a journalism education

Model Curricula for Journalism Education is a 150-page document produced by UNESCO and published in 2007. Its contents are based on work done in 2005 by an international group of journalism educators.

While many details in the document (particularly the recommended books) are now quite out of date, the general principles and recommendations are still solid and useful.

Although my main concern usually centers on digital skills (visual, audio, code) for reporting and storytelling, I was intrigued by these two lists in the UNESCO document (pages 33–34):

Journalism and Society


These are listed under “Journalism Competencies” (page 30) and follow a much longer list labeled “Professional Standards,” which includes research skills, writing skills, and a list with this unwieldy heading:

Skilled use of the tools of journalism in editing, designing, and producing material, for print, broadcast and online media, with an understanding of and ability to adapt to convergence and technological developments in journalism.

I noticed the absence of math skills, statistics, knowledge of economics, and computer programming skills from the lists.

Lacking skills and knowledge in those areas, a journalist is ill-prepared for reporting in today’s world.

Related post: 6 Proposals for Journalism Education Today (July 2011).

Categories: ideas, teaching

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